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I use an Ubuntu laptop and have done for about three years, but I am not particularly techie. I'd like to put together a machine which basically works as a ...
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  1. #1
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    Dedicated machine for writer


    I use an Ubuntu laptop and have done for about three years, but I am not particularly techie. I'd like to put together a machine which basically works as a word processor with a music player and can support usb so I can get my work off it and on it, run a printer and support sound output to an amplifier.

    I was thinking of Abiword for the wp but that's GTK, and, if I have understood it correctly, that requires a huge bundle of backend distracting palava that I enjoy on my main computer but don't want on my 'distraction-free' machine. I also thought audacity for the music player. I like to keep my music in ogg-vorbis format.

    I thought it should be possible with Ubuntu, but I'm getting less sure; removing anything central to the distro seems to be discouraged (it doesn't even like me trying to remove games) and I do not have a clue where to start. Could anyone suggest a basic o/s setup? I already have a monitor I'd like to use and would like to include a good microsoft keyboard that I have tried, with a curved layout. Other than the keyboard, mouse, printer (still to buy so easiest to install), monitor, usb port and audio out, I shan't be adding any more hardware.

    I'm happy for it to not have a gui desktop, so long as someone can point in the direction of a reasonably accessible guide to running and compiling a basic linux machine.

    Sorry to ramble. This is probably a really stupid post, but I can't even work out what to google.

  2. #2
    Linux Engineer hazel's Avatar
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    gtk-based apps can be quite nifty. It's Gnome that's big; you want to avoid Gnome on your customised machine. Use a desktop based on a window manager like fluxbox or enlightenment.

    I would recommend Debian net install. This installs a basic system and then you add what you want from the Internet. It's much better to build up from a base than to try to cut down an existing system. And Debian has huge repositories and uses the apt-get/synaptic package manager that you are already familiar with.

    btw, are you aware that abiword doesn't do curly quotes? That's why I don't use it any more.
    "I'm just a little old lady; don't try to dazzle me with jargon!"

  3. #3
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    Thumbs up

    Fantastic! Thanks. You've given me exactly what I wanted; a framework for research.
    It's to Maplins for me, next weekend!


    What word processor do you use?

    Thanks again.

    DWC

  4. #4
    Linux Engineer hazel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by danceswithcats View Post
    What word processor do you use?
    Well, I use OpenOffice but it's a big beast and slow to load. I don't know of any small Linux word processors except for abiword. You could of course fall back on traditional unix text processing using groff or teX. They provide very close control over the appearance of your final file but they're not wysiwyg like word processors are so there's quite a steep learning curve.
    "I'm just a little old lady; don't try to dazzle me with jargon!"

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